Kick Colds & Flus to the Curb with This Immune-Boosting Soup Recipe
Winter months are famous for sniffles and sneezes. Shivers and shakes.
Ever notice how people tend to get sick more often during colder temperatures? Why is that?
One reason is that the colder temperatures cause people to spend more time inside, where any existing viruses float around and spread more easily.
However, newer research is connecting the dots between the role your nose and throat play when it comes to your immune system. Also known as your mucosal immune system, this area acts as the first line of defense against bacteria and viruses, and this system can be directly affected by colder air (1).
Colder air temperatures make it harder for this immune system to fight off pathogens, which is why you’re more likely to catch a cold or flu in winter.
When you’re not feeling well, it’s important to rest up and provide your body with the most nourishing foods available. Keep processed foods at a minimum and opt for fresh fruits and vegetables whenever you can.
Soups are a warming, hearty way to fill your stomach and support your immune system, but many store-bought varieties contain high amounts of sodium and other preservatives.
Homemade offers numerous ways to combine fresh ingredients, and we’re excited to bring you a delicious immune-boosting recipe inspired by I Heart Vegetables (4). With some delicious KaraMD add-ons, this healthy and satisfying soup contains fiber, vitamins, and antioxidants to keep your body going strong in the fight against seasonal illness.
The ingredients in this recipe are strategically picked because they contain phytonutrients that boost your fighter cells (also known as your white blood cells), and help you get back to better health as quickly as possible.
Another reason these soups work so well is that they are broth-based. These can be better than cream-based soups due to the inflammatory nature dairy can have in those with sensitivities or allergies (2). If you fall into this category, the added nasal inflammation can make you feel worse, or prolong your illness. If you prefer creamier soups, consider using coconut milk.
Give yourself 30 minutes and you might discover a new favorite recipe on the stove and ready to go. Let’s dive in!
- 1-2 tbsps extra virgin olive oil, organic
- 1 medium yellow onion, diced
- 5 garlic cloves, minced
- 1/2 tsp freshly grated ginger
- 1 tsp turmeric
- 1 tsp paprika
- ½ tsp cumin
- 2 tsp freshly chopped parsley
- 1 tbsp lemon juice
- 1 large sweet potato, peeled and cut into 1/2 " cubes (anything larger will take too long to cook)
- 1 15oz can chickpeas, drained and rinsed
- 1 cup red lentils, rinsed well and uncooked
- 5 cups low-sodium vegetable broth
- ½ broccoli tips, optional
- 1/2 cup kale, destemmed and torn into 1″ pieces
- 2 large carrots, chopped (optional)
- ½ cup peas, optional
- 1 cup sliced shitake mushrooms, optional
- Salt and pepper to taste
- In a large pot or dutch oven, heat olive oil over medium-high heat. Stirring occasionally, sauté onion, broccoli, and carrots for about 7-8 minutes, or until softened.
- Next, add your garlic, mushrooms, and ginger and continue to cook for another 2-3 minutes.
- Add the turmeric, cumin, and paprika and cook for about 1 minute.
- Add in your lemon juice, sweet potato cubes, chickpeas, red lentils, and vegetable broth. Bring to a gentle boil.
- Once boiling, reduce heat to low and simmer for about 15-20 minutes or until the sweet potatoes are soft.
- Add chopped kale and peas and continue to cook for 2-3 minutes. Kale should soften and begin to wilt.
- Season with salt and pepper.
- Allow soup to cool slightly before enjoying it!
Store leftovers in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 5 days in the refrigerator. To freeze, place cooled soup in a freezer bag for up to 3 months.
Kale: Some people don’t like the texture and flavor of kale. If that’s you, you can swap out for fresh spinach. Keep in mind that spinach cooks quickly, so make sure to add it at the very end.
Lentils: Try not to substitute for this. While you may think green or brown lentils will work just as well, red lentils break down faster and create the hearty base this recipe calls for.
Chickpeas: If you’re not a fan or simply don’t have any in the pantry, white kidney or great northern beans will work just as fine.
Sweet potatoes: If you’d like to try something different instead of sweet potatoes, parsnips can be a great substitute
For an added immune boost, you might want to pair this savory recipe with something on the sweet side.
We’ve got you covered there, too. Some of the best beverage companions (4,5,6) are:
- Total Immunity combines immune-boosting superheroes like Vitamin C, Elderberry, Zinc, and Lysine in an easy-to-take capsule. Take a couple with your meal to enhance the health benefits!
- Pure I.V. packets take hydration to a whole new level with patent NOE technology. Open a packet of either Strawberry, Passion Fruit, Watermelon, or Lemon Lime and mix with water. You’ll be amazed as you taste the difference.
- Revive Reds harnesses the power of polyphenols, antioxidants, probiotic support and shilajit to keep your energy levels high as your body recovers and heals.
Wrapping It Up
Winter weather might be sweater weather, but it’s also cold and flu weather. Taking care of yourself by eating healthily and staying fit can help keep your immune system strong.
Soups are a great way to experiment with different vegetables, herbs, and spices. Using broth-based recipes can make it easier on your body as your warrior cells fight the good fight against different viruses and bacteria.
Do you know someone who could use a warm bowl of soup? Share this recipe with them today!
✝✝This noted statement is based on independent research and is not necessarily the opinion of the author